Bang, bang, bang. What the heck! We jumped out of bed, the dogs started howling and bang bang, bang. What in the hells name is that? We scurried around trying like some comedy sketch trying to shake off the deep sleep. For a moment, we thought we were target practice but as we briskly peered out the window we could see someone practicing their shooting skills at the edge of the woods. Jeez, all a little unnerving giving the location and the fact we are the only camper in the woods.
In and around the area are quiet a few places of interest, so we wheeled Eor our little monkey bike out the garage and off we set. First a scoot around the town of Ketzryn to the well restored Teutonic Knights castle before heading to Swieta Lipka, which means Holy Lime Tree.
The beautiful church is located on a small strip of land situated between two lakes. We wandered around the fading frescos of the cloisters before stepping inside to the most wonderful treat. At first, we thought the priest was holding a mass but no, he was telling the huge crowd of Polish pilgrims the history of the church. It felt like being at the opera, we didn’t understand one word but full understood the story.
Through the centuries the church has passed through many a hand, destroyed and rebuilt several times. Despite everything the one thing that has remained is the holy lime tree and its miracle qualities. One by one the congregation kisses the tree and said their prayers before the priest continued to point out the key elements of the church. From the fresco ceiling and the huge wooden alter piece with the iconic Madonna and Child.
All of a sudden the organ started playing and everyone turned around. There stood the grand 1720 baroque organ carefully restored in 1960’s by one of the Jesuit brothers. The gilded turreted topped by angelic figures started to move, it was wonderful. A full theatrical organ with bells, cymbals and trumpets just like a traditional fairground attraction. We stood a gaze as one of the Jesuit brothers held his concert, playing a total of 5 pieces, keeping my favourite for the grand finale, Pie Je Su. Goose bumps galore, the whole church stood in silence, you could have heard a pin drop.
What a total surprise and all free, need to add that to our freebie list! It lifted our spirits and we walked out with a spring in our next step as we moved on to Rezsel. The small old town is quaint with flower pots decorating the main street. First a walk in to the gothic church and then over to the 14th century bishops castle. At the entrance, a old chap cuddling a scruffy kitten collected our £0.50 pp fee. We climbed the tower with stunning views of the surrounding landscape and the massive church tower. In and out the cellars and castle ruins before heading back to Vin.
Our Bumble Verdict: All three places have something different to offer but Swieta Lipka organ concert is a highlight worth a detour.
Another walk around Wolfs Lair with the dudes before setting off. With no where particular in mind we set off heading south. After about half an hour our GPS did its thing and sent us down a poor quality B road. It was a tad bumpy but at least it didn’t have any huge pot holes. At the end of the road we popped out at the lakeside village of Ryn. It looked rather nice, so we did a bit of recon and found a perfect spot. Behind the town hall on a small patch of grass over looking the lake and marina.
A nice stroll along the waters edge at sunset before retreating to our little pad. We’d spotted a pizza parlour in the village, so Craig nipped for a takeaway and called for a few beers. We had planned on eating out but just as we were heading out the door, a car with 3 young lads pulled up. They smiled and asked us how much our motorhome cost. They were really pleasant lads and nothing untoward but it made us a bit nervous, so we opted for a take out. Craig called at the Alcohole, a Polish off license which sells a huge array of beers and spirits. Its also the place to find the town drunks but with the weakest beer starting at 6% its not surprising.
We sat eating pizza whilst watching the world go by. The locals were as fascinated with our GB plate as we were with their culture. By 8pm the sun was gone and the stars were twinkling. A bunch of lads sat on the town hall steps having a laugh whilst families strolled on by. We particular liked the old lady taking her cats for a walk without the aid of a lead.
We sat with the windows wide open enjoying a gentle breeze. Mac n Tosh completely flaked out when tonights entertainment started. A local folk duo started singing in the waterside bar. It was lovely to sit and listen to them sing. She had a beautiful voice even though we couldn’t understand a word of what she was singing until she sang ‘fire’ by Ed Sheran.. I was sold
Our Bumble Verdict: Ryn, a nice lakeside resort good for a sleepover,
Our sleepy spot: Ryn, right in the heart of the village with great views over the lakeside and live Polish Folk band in the background.
Wild Camping GPS position for Ryn N053.937371, E021.545451
Route: Gierloz to Ryn